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ScottyMacEsq
ScottyMacEsq, Attorney
Category: Legal
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Experience:  Licensed Texas General Practice Attorney
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I signed a car loan for my niece because my sister in law begged

Customer Question

I signed a car loan for my niece because my sister in law begged me to an gaunteed that there would not be any issues but she would take care of anything that came up. They live in Florida I live in Missouri well my niece has gotten several tickets from traffic cameras which she lied to me and said she paid but didn't. Now my licences is suspended for Failure to appear in traffic court for the tickets an when I asked my sister in law to help me get my license back I was told it was not her problem. My question is what do I do? Can I sue?

They also promised me the car would be refinanced within six months of getting the loan it has been two years of late payments an tickets plus insuance issues an they refuse to refinance can I do anything about any of it?
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Legal
Expert:  ScottyMacEsq replied 1 year ago.

ScottyMacEsq :

Thank you for using JustAnswer. I am researching your issue and will respond shortly.

ScottyMacEsq :

I'm sorry to hear about your situation. Unfortunately this is an all-too-common situation in a co-signing situation, where you incur financial liability on behalf of another individual. I know it's a little too late, but I always advise individuals to avoid, if possible, co-signing anything, and only co-sign if you're willing to be completely liable for the loan. You would be surprised how many individuals come to this site asking questions with a situation similar to yours.

ScottyMacEsq :

The entire point of a co-signing situation is that you attach your credit and good name to another, so that the lender will make a loan. The contract between the lender and the co-signer / guarantor for payment is almost certainly going to be enforceable, but there's also a contract (either express or implied) between the co-signer and the co-signee (the beneficiary of the co-sign agreement). That contract states that the co-signee will make payments on time and do other actions consistent with good faith and fair dealing.

ScottyMacEsq :

Furthermore, in your situation, it seems that you have a contract (although the enforceability is a bit unclear) with your sister, in that she made a guarantee to you that if anything happens, she;ll take care of it.

ScottyMacEsq :

In short, yes, you can sue both of them for expenses you've incurred. You can sue your niece for breach of contract (because of that implied contract) as well as for "contribution" (the legal term for when you pay something that she's directly liable for, you can go after her in court for reimbursement). Again, you are legally liable to pay those expenses to the lender as well as to the government (for the tickets), but since your niece is primarily liable, with you being secondarily liable, you can seek reimbursement from her in court.

ScottyMacEsq :

You can also sue your sister for brecah of contract, in that she induced you to sign with the representation that she would make everything right if there was a breach.

ScottyMacEsq :

You should first, however, send a demand letter before escalating legal action. Send a demand letter demanding payment of your damages within 30 days, otherwise you will pursue legal action against them, seeking that amount plus any additional damages as allowed by law. Send this letter certified, return receipt requested, as well as a copy sent regular mail. Keep a copy for yourself, as well as the return receipt number so that you can show the court that you made a demand for the unpaid amount.

ScottyMacEsq :

Do a search on the web for her county and "small claims court." You should find either a website or phone number to the small claims clerk. Ask them what you need to do to bring such a lawsuit. The small claims clerk will give you guidance on how to file this suit and how to get the other party served with notice. You will receive a hearing date, at which you should present your evidence and ask for a judgment for the amount that you paid and should be reimbursed.

ScottyMacEsq :

Hope that clears things up a bit. If you have any other questions, please let me know. If not, and you have not yet, please rate my answer AND press the "submit" button, if applicable. Please note that I don't get any credit for my answer unless and until you rate it a 3, 4, 5 (good or better). Thank you, XXXXX XXXXX luck to you!

ScottyMacEsq, Attorney
Category: Legal
Satisfied Customers: 12230
Experience: Licensed Texas General Practice Attorney
ScottyMacEsq and 4 other Legal Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 1 year ago.


thank you for your help

Expert:  ScottyMacEsq replied 1 year ago.
My pleasure, and again, I wish you the best of luck in this matter.

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ScottyMacEsq
ScottyMacEsq
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Licensed Texas General Practice Attorney